Thursday, December 30, 2010

2010 Darwin Awards

Courtesy of the Toad King


You've been waiting for them with bated breath, so without further ado, here are the 2010 Darwin Awards.

Eighth Place

In Detroit , a 41-year-old man got stuck and drowned in two feet of water after squeezing head first through an 18-inch-wide sewer grate to retrieve his car keys.

Seventh Place

A 49-year-old San Francisco stockbroker, who "totally zoned when he ran", accidentally jogged off a 100-foot high cliff on his daily run.

Sixth Place

While at the beach, Daniel Jones, 21, dug an 8 foot hole for protection from the wind and had been sitting in a beach chair at the bottom, when it collapsed, burying him beneath 5 feet of sand. People on the beach used their hands and shovels trying to get him out but could not reach him. It took rescue workers using heavy equipment almost an hour to free him. Jones was pronounced dead at a hospital.

Fifth Place

Santiago Alvarado, 24, was killed as he fell through the ceiling of a bicycle shop he was burglarizing. Death was caused when the long flashlight he had placed in his mouth to keep his hands free rammed into the base of his skull as he hit the floor.

Fourth Place

Sylvester Briddell, Jr., 26, was killed as he won a bet with friends who said he would not put a revolver loaded with four bullets into his mouth and pull the trigger.

Third Place

After stepping around a marked police patrol car parked at the front door, a man walked into H&J Leather & Firearms intent on robbing the store. The shop was full of customers and a uniformed officer was standing at the counter. Upon seeing the officer, the would-be robber announced a hold-up and fired a few wild shots from a target pistol. The officer and a clerk promptly returned fire, and several customers also drew their guns and fired.

The robber was pronounced dead at the scene by Paramedics. Crime scene investigators located 47 expended cartridge cases in the shop. The subsequent autopsy revealed 23 gunshot wounds. Ballistics identified rounds from 7 different weapons. No one else was hurt.


Paul Stiller, 47, and his wife Bonnie were bored just driving around at 2 A.M. So they lit a quarter stick of dynamite to toss out the window to see what would happen. Apparently they failed to notice that the window was closed.


Kerry Bingham had been drinking with several friends when one of them said they knew a person who had bungee-jumped from a local bridge in the middle of traffic. The conversation grew more excited, and at least 10 men trooped along the walkway of the bridge at 4:30 AM. Upon arrival at the midpoint of the bridge, they discovered that no one had brought a bungee rope. Bingham, who had continued drinking, volunteered and pointed out that a coil of lineman's cable lay nearby. They secured one end around Bingham's leg and then tied the other to the bridge. His fall lasted 40 feet before the cable tightened and tore his foot off at the ankle. He miraculously survived his fall into the icy water and was rescued by two nearby fishermen. Bingham's foot was never located.


Zookeeper Friedrich Riesfeldt (Paderborn, Germany) fed his constipated elephant 22 doses of animal laxative and more than a bushel of berries, figs and prunes before the plugged-up pachyderm finally got relief. Investigators say ill-fated Friedrich, 46, was attempting to give the ailing elephant an olive oil enema when the relieved beast unloaded. The sheer force of the elephant's unexpected defecation knocked Mr. Riesfeldt to the ground where he struck his head on a rock as the elephant continued to evacuate 200 pounds of dung on top of him. It seems to be just one of those freak accidents that proves... 'Shit happens'

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Good week, more ahead

I've been doing a little more that I normally would this time of the year because of La Vuelta at the end of January. A 3 day ride in PR, 155 miles the first day 81 the second and 130 the third day. The ride is divided in 3 groups, "A" riders aka the Hammer Heads 22mph and up, group "B", the mortals, 18+ and group "C" 15+. My plan is to ride with the B group the first day and then try to hang on with the A's the second day  (short day) and slide to group "D" (the slowly Dying ones) by the end of the ride. So far I've been good as far as training and hitting the trainer and rollers at least 5-6 days a week with 2-3 days of morning evening rides. The key is not just to spin but put some intensity into the rides with a lot of short and long intervals. I'm sure with almost 600 riders total my skills as a wheel sucker will come in handy. I've never done this ride but from all the comments I have read it is very well organized with a police escort closing every road for the 3 pelotons to ride non stop. The latest Bicycling magazine has an 8 page spread on it. There's still spots open. Think about it, 3 days of warm weather riding at the end of January. I was lucky that my niece gave me a free entry to the ride since her business was one of the sponsors last year and they were given 4 free entries. Cashed my Delta sky miles and got a round trip for $35.00. But, and this is a big, huge BUT, don't fly Delta unless you have sky miles, while all the other major airlines charge $100 one way for the bike, Delta charges $200. Thanks to my niece and sky miles for the "savings". I haven't missed a spinning class for the last 2 months to pay for the bike.
Have a great day everyone.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Merry Christmas

A few days late, Merry Christmas Everyone.
Back to work today; not to many cars on the road, wish it was like that everyday of the week.
Spent Christmas eve at my son's with the family and had a great time.
Put in a few good workouts and rode outside on Saturday. Yesterday I was planning on riding outside after church but it was very windy and 23 degrees outside. 23 and no wind I can stand a couple hrs outside, but when it gets windy like yesterday, unless somebody else rides and suffers with me, I stay indoors. Hopefully the week will go fast, I have Friday and Monday off with good temps by the end of the week. By good temps I mean high 30's to maybe 40's. Good riding and hiking weather.
Have a short week everyone.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Save your alarm

Had a very light sleep and kept waking up last night. I had set the alrm for 4:15am to get up and run for 30 minutes and do core work, but at 4am re-set it for 5:30am and tried to go back to sleep. The alarm goes off, get up, take a shower, get ready and head downstairs, sit at the table to read the daily prayer and take a glance at the stove clock...4:45am. I couldn't believe it, then it dawn on me, when I reset the alarm in my phone, I never saved it. What do I do now? Only one thing to do, changed and went downstairs and did upper body weights an core work. Reminds me of when I used to deliver papers when I was in high school, I used to get up at 4am to deliver 100 paper route on my bike rushing to finish before 6:30. One morning I got up at 2am thinking it was 4am and spent 2 hrs cursing the delivery guy thinking he was late and we almost got into a fight when he finally showed up right on time and I was still thinking he was late. When he made me realize I was a jackass for yelling at him I apologized up and down we had a cup of coffee and went on our merry ways. One thing, after that incident he made sure that if he was running late my papers were the first ones dropped off...wonder why.
Now that I think about it, my route was a long one and I had no headlights, no tail lights and no helmet.
Of course, the traffic back then wasn't what it is today, from a small town of 15 to 20,000 people 30 years ago, to over 50,000 today.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

The Nativity story, as told by Google

Worth watching

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Mid 20's, sunny, clear path...priceless

With temps in the mid 20's and sunny, riding outside had to be better than 1 hr on the trainer. The park bike path was clear with just a few icy spots. Pulled the steel single speed out of hibernation and headed down to the park. Ended up riding for two hrs and enjoyed it which is the important thing  here. This time of the year not to many rides outside are enjoyable. When the sun is out it makes you feel better and warm.
Today, different story, mid 20's again but overcast and windy, one hr on the trainer watching the Browns lose again to a team they should have beaten. They keep going backwards instead of forward.
Someday...someday, the eternal hope of Browns fans.
Here's a few more winter pics.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Marching band kicking a soccer ball

Friday, December 17, 2010


I don't particularly like cats, but this is a good pic

And a CVNRA pic

Pictures provided by Jeff A.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Clear skies in the future????????

The eastern burbs get pounded with the lake effect snow all the time.
looks like there's a dim light at the end of the tunnel.

Took this picture at 7:15am this morning on my way to work. A little glimmer of hope for the east.

Roads were in very good shape today, unlike yesterday. Most of the burbs I drive through had cancelled school for a second day in a row and the roads were bad.
The temps are climbing to the mid 20's by the end of the week, a lot beter than the mid teens we are having right now with the wind blowing.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Bikepark Wintenberg

The boys are back

Had not heard from the Zen man and spidey in a while. They spent some time in the looney bin after trying to steal my pain killers when I dislocated my shoulder back in April.
I walked into the family room and there they were messing around as usual.

I knew I should've changed all the locks in the house. Can't wait to see what kind of mess they get into. The dog cage is waiting again for them.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Nice weather

With bad weather coming,I'm glad I took advantage of Saturday's "nice" temps and rode for a couple of hrs. Parked at the top of Ridge and the pkwy and took off. Stopped after I crossed 21 to take off  the balaclava and I was dumbfounded when I reached to take my helmet off and...I forgot to put it on. Turned around mad at myself and thought about just going home but I wanted 2 hrs. So, I rode back went down the hill, stopped for a few minutes to talk to Jeff who had just finished his run and ended  up with 30+ and the 2 hrs I was looking for.

Today I got up earlier to do upper body/core work, got ready and headed out the door to turn around after 1 mile. I almost got hit by a ... driver, my car was sliding all over the place. Had enough in just one mile.
so, I came home to this.

Finally, I just sat down to a cup of coffee and enjoy the new lap top we got yesterday and to have a conversation with my buddies at the kitchen table.

Here's a few more winter pics.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

1 more day of white knuckle driving

Another knuckle driving session coming in to work, "again" today. Bands of snow coming down hard made it hard to see at times. At least I had no encounters of the "stupid" kind on the roads today. Everybody was taking their time and driving at a safe distance from one another. Roads were very slippery and I slid a couple times but with "all wheel drive" the Vibe recovers fast.
I have to say, everything looks beautiful.

Sorry for the color in the pictures, I forgot to change the setting to daylight in the camera.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

The view from inside

The drive in this morning was no fun. Traffic was bumper to bumper on 82 going east or west this morning. I took a couple of side roads in North royalton, made it back to Brecksville and it was still a mess. Took a right turn into Brueggers bagels and had a bagel an coffee waiting for the traffic to clear. 20 mins later the road and traffic were better and made it in at 9am.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

From a village to a hill City

Today is the day that ended all Christmas decorations. I like Christmas and can get pretty deep into it when you talk decorations. Got up early and headed to the early service at Grace Baptist in Brunswick at 8:30am to hear my wife sing "Oh Holy Night".
I never get tired of listening to her sing, she has a beautiful voice.
Anyways, I got in the mood to start building the village, so I went to Home Depot and bought a 2x4 pc of plywood painted it white and started decorating. Not soon after the first couple of houses where up I came to the conclussion that I needed a bigger area. Back to Lowes this time and bought a 4x8 and had the guys there cut it into a 3x6.
I'm happy now, got home painted it and started setting up the "city" this time. By the way the plywod was purchased and painted Saturday night. Started setting up and looking like this,

From Street level

Then the wife comes home with an idea, no, let me say great idea. She says 'why don't we build layers? Layers it is. Back to Kohls for more "snow" and she shows up with 3 more buildings, wohooo that's the spirit... and the savings account. We had a great time decorating and it turned out like this.

Notice the lighted light poles, we went all out.
I love this time of the year, I do get in the Christmas spirit.
Next year is going to be a full 4x8 plywood, I can see it now. One thing I will NOT do is put those ridiculous antlers on my head, I rather wear a santa hat.

I did get out on the  road single speed for 1.5 hrs of fast spinnin yaterday and today I manage to put in an hr on the trainer of mostly 30 secs. intervals for 40 minutes with 10 min warm up and 10 min cool down.

Friday, December 3, 2010

New Low

I have sunk to the depths of despair. While doing the rollers/trainer or upper body core work in the early, very early morning, like 4:30am, I have watched so many infomercials ranging from "extenze" to "viagra" to the pitchman, sorry forgot his name, about every product available for sale on TV. I watched ESPN, the weather channel for a 45 minutes, old movies, fairly new movies, TDF and Giro  dvd's, local news, you name it I think I have watched them all. Until last night when I came to the realization I was watching "The Cake Boss" for an hour and actually kind off enjoyed it. I mean this guy can really make some cakes. And now he has a another show about bakers competing for a spot in his team. Yes it is a new LOW, watching a "reality show" about a bakery in Hoboken, New Jersey. I have really sunk into the abyss way deep into a darkness I didn't know it was there. The only way to climb out is to order a cake with a bicycle theme on it. That's an idea that just may work.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010


wingsuit base jumping from Ali on Vimeo.

Lights that work, lights that don't work

Why is it that every year when you pull all the christmas lights out some work some don't. Half a string is good, half a string is not. Every year is the same thing, boxes full of decorations and lights that I end up throwing away after losing my patience, kicking them, calling them "names" and then just sitting there in the middle of the garage laughing at myself for acting like a little kid. But you know what, it is frustrating. I ended up throwing away 6 strings of gutter lights all my bushes lights and a couple more strings that didn't work. It used to be my house was the Grisswold house of the culdesac since not to many people puts up lights around here...grinches. You know what, I'm buying more and putiing them up, I like looking at them even if I have to do it all over next year.

Thursday, November 25, 2010


Happy Thanksgiving everyone. What are you thankful for?

Monday, November 22, 2010

Great weekend weather

Another great weekend weather wise for riding. Saturday had two spin classes plus and intro class for a good 2:15 workout. After the classes I hit the hot tub at the rec for 15 mins., headed home and put in 3 solid hrs of yard work. Went to Carrie Cerinos for dinner with the "old" guys and had a great time. The food was excellent and the company was better.
Sunday got up at 6am and after Ken decided to go to the knob, I headed down to Mohican for maybe the last time this year. The trail was in perfect shape with the rain early in the week. I took it easy for the first 11 miles until the covered bridge since the leaves were wet still from the rain or the morning dew. I didn't want the wheels to slide from under me and get banged up again because of being careless on a humid trail. After the bridge on the other side of the mountain it looked like it had never rained at all. The trail was drier and fast. I only ran into two other riders going the opposite way and they warned me about the hunters. I did hear shots in the parking lot before I took off, so every few minutes I was hitting my bell a couple times just in case. Made back it safe and with no holes to the parking lot and there was a lot of people out on the trail, counted 23 cars. Great day for a ride, all the cyclocrossers  had a great day in Cleveland also.

Upper 60's for the high today but rain and wind. Time to put the fenders on the 1x9 or the single speed.
Hoping to put in a few hrs on the saddle over Thanksgiving weekend.
Have a great day everyone and don't get wet.

Friday, November 19, 2010

I thought this was funny

Extreme riding

Where the trail ends... from NWD films on Vimeo.
Didn't have much to write about, no blogging for a few days.
Last Sunday Ken and I headed to Mohican for a lap, With Ken on his new Superfly 29er full suspension maiden voyage and me trying to keep up on my single speed 29er. We rode at what I would call a very controlled speed and ended up with a solid 2:35. lap. Monday I hitched a ride to work and rode home. Left at 4:30 and within 45 mins. the lights were on, it gets dark fast and the temps plummet faster than the stock market on a bad day. Had my toe covers on but riding with your regular summer shoes and wool socks is not recommended this time of the year. The rest of the week I've been taking it easy, 2 days at the gym for my spin classes (did I mentioned I'm a spin instructor) and 3 easy weight sessions sessions. The spin class has been growing steady and had the largest atendance Thursday with 10. Not many people want to make my class at 5:45am twice a week. With only 16 bikes, 10 spinners is a good day. Should get a few more in the next few weeks, there's still a couple of the regulars from last year that haven't showed every week. Next week is time to start serious training towards next year.
I'm really looking forward to next year, more news on that at a later date.
Saturday is a two class spin morning and yard work in the afternoon. Sunday we are heading down to Mohican again for a 9:30amd start. Join us for a lap, the trail should be in great shape. The afternoon will be spent watching the BROWNS play another good game.
Tonight, maybe an hr. or two on the bike path in Stronsville on the fixie.
Have a great day and weekend.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Danny MacAskill

Every time I watch this guy it makes me wish I had the guts to do some of the stuff he does. Enjoy.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Nice day yesterday

The temps hit 60+ yesterday in a beautiful sunny day. Thought about riding the SS since I got home early from the doctor (more later) but opted to rake leaves, and you say "what?". I had my spinning class and weights in the morning so I decided against riding, it had to get done before it rains again. Gutters need clean "again" more raking in the back yard and hopefully cut the grass for the last time. But then again, I'll like to cut it again in December  which it would mean the weather has been warm and not to rainy, bring it on. two 1.5 hrs lates the front yard was done, finished in the dark.
Got up at 4:20am this morning and jumped on the rollers for 45 mins and light core work

Yeah buddy, it is safer to put your rollers on the treadmill and ride. I can do it witout the treadmill but I do it this way because I haven't mastered drinking water while riding yet. I can ride with one hand but when it comes to drinking, watch out. This way I can stop hold on to the handles, drink, towell off and ride, all in less than 10 secs.
Anyway, I been having "man" problems so I decided to make an appointment and see what's going on.
Talk to the doc and after she did the "moooon river" on me and told me not to laugh while she s... her f... in my a... whoa woman, that just didn't feel right. Blood work PSA samples and seeing the urologyst at the end of the month. Noot too long but long enough to make you think.
Thoughts will be for a different post.
In the meatime, don't forget to make somebody smile.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Brompton Challenge

Howard Venning, the Managing Director of our distributor in England is another bike nut. How do you know a bike nut, he owns 9 bikes.
Here he is competing in the Brompton (folding bike) challenge in London England taking a respectable 91st out of 532 competitors. This is a race where you have to wear a shirt and tie. Nice suit, Howard.


Wednesday, November 10, 2010

New camera

Have you noticed how nice the pictures I post look now. I finally bought a new camera... back in August.

I can take pictures riding and they don't come out looking blurry.
Have a great Wednesday and make somebody happy today.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Working late

Staying late tonite at work to help host the "SBE" meeting (Society of Broadcasting Engineers).
Changed clothes at 4:30 and went to the park for a 30 minute run. First time I run in a year and a half, just trying to get back into it. I forgot how much fun and pain running is, it took me 12 minutes to get going but once I warmed up I hit my stride and felt great. Recoverite and Ibuprofen and lets se how my knees and back feel tomorrow. I'll try a few more times and see how it goes and then decide if I ramp it up or not. I love running but it doesn't matter how much core work I do my back just can't take the pounding.
Hope you had a great day.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Weekend wrap up

I'll start with Friday. Nothing much, got up early and went downstairs for some upper body and core work for 45 mins. In the evening we went to my nephews b-day in Parma and what a shock when we came out of the house at 11pm. 2 inches of snow on the ground. Drove 5 miles to Strongsville and nothing, not even a flake floating in the air.
Got up fairly early on Saturday, got coffee sat down with the PD and headed downstairs again around 10am to get ready and do a short 1-2 hr ride. Never came back up until after 4pm. I started re-arranging everything, cleaning bikes you name it I did it. Before and after pictures.

Got a good no, very good deal that I just couldn't pass up, $184.00 for a pair of shimano SH-R310 custom fit road shoes. Now all I need to find out is who can do the custom fit for me.

Yesterday (Sunday) Ken picked me up an we headed to Oberlin to the "Red Flannel" ride.
32 at the start but it warmed up to a cozy 40 something by the time we finished. Very windy day but we rode with a group for most of the day. Afterward we head to Fresh Start restaurant in Oberlin for breakfast. Stop by sometime for some great food.

I don't want to speak for him but, it doesn't look like he's having fun riding that big wheel. it loook more like he's in pain.

Have a great Monday and don't for get to be nice to somebody, make their day.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Harms way

On my commute to work by car I see many runners on the road doing their early morning run. Must of the runners that run on the parkway road that has no paved path have their reflective clothing on or blinking lights and you can see them from a safe distant. Then there's the "stupid" ones that on a rainy dark day like today choose to run on the freaking road with no lights and a vest that should have been discarded 10 years ago, even though this section of the park in the Bedford reservation has a very good path to run on. They run on the freaking pavement and don't move to the side when they see you, well I can't see you either until I'm right on top of you, you stupid moron. I almost stopped to say something but why bother and probably get into a heated argument that's going to go nowhere because he or she will defend their "right" to run on the road. If you want to run on the road, make yourself visible, I have nothing against that, it's the stupidity that really gets to me. I ran for many years until my back gave up on it and never did put myself in harms way, didn't want to end up in the hospital or my kids grow up without a dad.
Be SMART out there people.
This brings me to another subject on riders riding with headphones on listening to music. Again you can do what you want but you are putting yourself in danger. It would be real bad if someone visited you at the hospital and leaned over you and whisper in your ear "car back" while you lay there with multiple broken bones. Sounds mean and callous, call it what you want. Why put yourself in harms way, be smart and don't get hurt and then blame somebody else for your stupidity.
Enjoy the run, enjoy the ride in a safe way.
Sorry but I needed to vent.
See you at the "Red Flannel".

Thursday, November 4, 2010

The answer to our problems

Wednesday, November 3, 2010


Went to Findley State park Sunday and I couldn'e believe how dry the trail was. I thought it would be somewhat soft and mussy in some spots but it was completely dry. Ken, Ray and I started at 8am and Chuck showed up later. 3 laps later and another weird crash and I was ready to go home. Going up a short steep bump my front whel hit a small stump and down for the count. My thigh hit a root and it's been sore for the last 2 days plus I didn't wear my elbow guard and yes, I hit the elbow. It's never going to heal since I always afall on my left side.
Got a ride in to work and I'll be riding home in the afternoon on the 1 x 9. First time on it for a long ride, hopefully nothing will go wrong, I  never did tested on the road only on the rollers.
have a great sunny day.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Mohican part 3

With the weather as nice as it has been I decided last night to go to Mohican again today. This time I "slept in" until 7am when I got up and started getting ready. I really took my time since I wasn't meeting anybody and had a lot of time to waste. Had breakfast a few cups of coffee, read the Plain Dealer and then decided to head out the door. The parking lot had a few cars and more people driving in. By 11am I was hitting the trail. This time all the leaves are down and the trail was covered up to the hubs in some places. The storm that went through on Tuesday took 3 trees down but Ryan Odell was walking the trail doing some light maintenance and I'm sure they'll be cut and moved off the trail soon. The trail is so dry that not even the Tuesday rain did anything to it other than keep the dust down. Had a great ride and maybe I'll make it again next Saturday.

On to another subject. I took the road single speed and turn it into a 1 x 9 for fall, winter early spring riding.


Sram 12-26 cassette, cannondale carbon fork, shimano 105 parts I had laying around and a 42" chain ring.

1 shifter brake lever and a "retro" brake lever. Haven't hit the road on it yet, but I rode the trainer and the rollers and it shifts great.